QuickCare: How to take accurate readings with your thermometer

The Kinsa QuickCare thermometer takes accurate oral, underarm, and rectal readings. But if you have run into any difficulties, you’ve come to the right spot! Below are some tips to make sure your QuickCare readings are as accurate as possible.

Thermometer accuracy tips:

  • Relax before taking the reading. Don’t take a temperature right after exercising or chasing your toddler around the house.
  • Don’t take your temperature immediately after taking a hot shower or a warm bath.
  • Don’t take your temperature immediately after having had anything to drink: ice water, hot soup, apple juice, or anything else for that matter.
  • Avoid holding the thermometer by the tip, before a reading.  Your body heat warms up the tip and may cause the thermometer to show an error message. 
  • Lastly, be sure to store your thermometer in a cool dry space away from heat and moisture. If you or your Kinsa were somewhere with a different temperature (like outside on a cold day) wait until you and your Kinsa have adjusted to the new temperature before taking a reading.

Oral Readings

For oral readings, always put the tip in one of your mouth’s heat pockets; under the tongue at the back of the mouth.  See the image below to learn where your heat pockets are located:


The temperature in one spot of the mouth can be very different from another (often varying by a full degree or more) so always put the tip in the same heat pocket every time for an accurate reading.

Rectal Readings

This is the most effective and accurate way to take an infant or young toddler's temperature. If you're a new parent, taking a rectal reading might be intimidating, but don’t fret - our very own Nurse Blake has written this fantastic guide just for you.

Note: Rectal readings can be ~1°F warmer than oral readings.

Underarm Readings

Sleeves and other clothes should be pulled up and out of the way. The thermometer needs to have direct and complete contact with your skin. Again, make sure you aren't fresh out of a bath, pool- anything that can interfere with a temperature reading or the temperature will not be accurate.


  • Underarm readings are considered to be the least accurate way of measuring temperature with a stick thermometer, according to the Mayo Clinic.
  • The Kinsa app automatically takes underarm placement into account when calculating the severity of the fever. But it does not use the well-known rule of thumb of artificially adding that 1°F to that underarm reading. Learn more here.